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The Ultimate Urban Travel Guides -- What You Need to Know Before You Go

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London

Europe's Most Cosmopolitan City

London

The most international, cosmopolitan, and populous European metropolis has reinvented itself for the new millennium. With a number of new architectural landmarks (the London Eye or the Gherkin are just two examples) and revived neighborhoods like the East End or the South Bank, it has reaffirmed itself as one of the most dynamic and culturally influential global cities.

Essentially a capital resulting from merged villages, London has no one heart, but many centers -- the tourist in Westminster, the financial in The City, the shopping in Knightsbridge, Mayfair, Camden Town, depending on your mood, wallet, and personality. London's many faces and subcultures are what guarantee that anyone who visits will not leave disappointed. All the latest trends, styles, music, or edgy youth culture are found and often born here, placing London in a leader position in the international creative scene.

London thrives on its complexity and diversity, offering an incredible range of galleries, theater, cafés, restaurants, and bars, not to mention markets and shopping. They can all be exciting, extraordinary, and often expensive experiences, and in a visit to a city that's got it all, exhilarating.


Top 10 Sights and Attractions

  1. Stand by Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament.
  2. Visit the British Museum for its extraordinary art and Egytian and Greek treasures.
  3. See Tate Modern's outstanding modern art collection.
  4. Shop in Covent Garden, Camden Market, and KNIGHTSBRIDGE.
  5. Go inside the Tower of London, home of the crown jewels.
  6. Admire the rich collection of the National Gallery.
  7. Step into Westminster Abbey to see where royalty is crowned and laid to rest.
  8. Visit Buckingham Palace, the famous royal residence.
  9. Tour St. Paul's Cathedral for its imposing architecture.
  10. Get a bird's-eye view of London from the London Eye.

SEE THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO ALL SIGHTS AND ATTRACTIONS »


Where to Stay

Look for the hotel or hostel that best matches your budget, type of trip or personality. Here you can guarantee a room but you do NOT pay anything at the time of booking. Payments are only made at the hotel and there are no booking fees. Most hotels allow cancellations with no penalty if done up to 24 or 48 hours in advance. You'll see that information at the time of booking and again in the confirmation email.

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Eating and Drinking

London's cosmopolitan population has brought a variety of ethnic cuisines to the city and you can now find an excellent range of food in all kinds of settings. Londoners are always looking for something new, flocking to the latest offerings from celebrity chefs, and setting high standards for the food. That means that in order to stand out from the competition, restaurants use fabulous interior design and continuously innovate their menus. The result is some of the best top-end restaurants in the world, high prices, and the need to book your table well in advance.

Shopping

Shopping in London is a much more enjoyable experience than anywhere else (including the other top shopping destinations of the world, New York, Paris, and Milan). That's due to the variety found in its vibrant street markets, alternative fashion boutiques, and luxury department stores. Discerning shoppers will always find something special there, or as they walk down some of the world's most exclusive shopping areas, from the designer-label zones of Sloane Street and Knightsbridge (home to the world-famous Harrods), to Oxford Street, to Bond Street, and pretty much anywhere in Mayfair.
Brand names tend to be more expensive here than anywhere else, but take advantage of the many sales to pick up bargains. The city is also a mecca for funky urban streetwear styles, with Camden getting packed on Sundays with young crowds looking for club or vintage wear. The day before they were probably at the Portobello Market in Notting Hill, everyone's Saturday destination for fashion, antiques, and fresh fruits and vegetables. Fresh produce is also found at Covent Garden, along with specialist foods and gifts. Then there's also Alfies for antiques, and Brick Lane for just about anything.

Gay and Lesbian

SEE THE CITY'S COMPLETE GAY AND LESBIAN GUIDE »


Airport and Transportation

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Tours &
Activities

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Airport


Car Rental

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